Remember when Toy Story first came out in 1995, amid the dazzlingly innovative CGI animation, you might have noticed at the heart of the story was a simple, powerful message. The value of friends.
In business, friends can be very valuable, but these friendships more take the form of mutually beneficial business relationships. At Likeable Local, we’re always looking for new opportunities, which is why we have our Partner Program. Our partners enjoy numerous perks as part of the program and in return, represent our company and product in front of their clients and prospects.
It’s a program that provides a boost to both sides of the relationship. The reality many tech companies come to realize quickly is that it’s difficult to do everything yourself. That’s where partners come it, and why it’s valuable to have a partner program to help lay down the basic guidelines for partnerships.
The key to a successful partnership is finding businesses providing complementary products or services, or finding businesses that have established relationships with a client base that could also be interested in your product or service. This way, you can find some common ground on which to build your new relationship. This also means that it’s pretty hard to find good partnerships among your direct competitors. Make sure you identify those guys as well (and if you don’t think you have competitors, look harder, they definitely exist).
Here’s a good example of one of Likeable Local’s partners, Local Search Essentials. Local Search Essentials is a marketing company that specializes in search engine marketing. Essentially, they optimize a company’s web presence to increase visibility on search engines, specifically for searchers in the locality of a business. Likeable Local doesn’t provides search engine optimization and marketing as part of our core functions, we work with social media marketing. In that way, Local Search Essentials was an ideal partner for us. They were able to provide our social media automation tool as a complimentary product to theirs, and much of their client base was exactly the same types of clients we were also seeking out.
Within 4 months of becoming a Likeable Local partner in July of 2015, Local Search Essentials had brought dozens of clients to Likeable Local and enjoyed the services and exposure a relationships with Likeable Local brought.
Timothy Miller, the CEO of Local Search Essentials, had this to say about the partnership, “It has helped us increase our presence, and given us the opportunity to position ourselves as 'experts' to existing and potential clients. Being able to refer potential clients to an Inc. or Forbes article [about Likeable Local] is powerful during the discovery and evaluation phase of our sales process – and helps increase the confidence of current client, which in turn results in increased retention.”
Of course, in a partnership, it always pays to have your new partners familiar with the product, and indeed, many of our partners are also our clients and are users of the platform. This deepens their knowledge of the platform and makes them more effective representatives of it. Not only that, their business also benefits from the value of our product, as any client would, except at a nicely discounted price. As Miller puts it, “The key is that many processes that were previously done manually are now automated. As we gain experience and master the Likeable Local software, the time spent per week per client has been reduced significantly.”
These kinds of valuable relationships are what help build strong businesses, especially in the tech industry. Even the largest tech companies, like Facebook, Google, Twitter, etc. have partners that help them perform the functions they don’t necessarily have the resources to devote to themselves. So, no matter the size of your company, a partner program is something you should definitely get started!
Learn more about our partnership with Local Search Essentials here.
Interested in joining our Partner Program? Learn more here.